But according to the recently released report, on the afternoon of June 7, 23-year-old Colin Scott and his sister left the boardwalk near Pork Chop Geyser and wandered to the Norris Geyser basin looking for a pool to soak in.
The report quoted Scott’s sister as saying, “her brother was reaching down to check the temperature of a hot spring when he slipped and fell into the pool.”
She had been filming the journey to the geyser on her phone, and caught Scott’s accident. Officials say they won’t release the video.
Later, a rescue team found portions of Scott’s body, along with a wallet and orange flip flops. The rescuers had to stop due to a lightning storm, and when they came back the next day, they couldn’t find any further remains in the highly acidic water.
Unlike Oregon’s mild hot springs, which, at 85-112 degrees, are perfect to soak in amongst old hippies, hot springs in Yellowstone can reach up to 250 degrees.
“In a very short order,” a deputy said, “there was a significant amount of dissolving,”
I woke up with my arms wrapped around a giant tree trunk—literally hugging the tree. I was wrapped in a sleeping bag, lying next to five people on cold, wooden planks.
We were camping in the sky—in a treehouse 200 feet in the air.
Hummingbird Hill is a hip treehouse just 20 minutes from downtown Portland. But being in it, you feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere.
I rented the house through LandApart, a new website based in Portland that lets private landowners rent out their outdoor areas. Think of it like Airbnb, but for the forest.
LandApart has been in development for the past two years. The site’s co-founder and CEO Ven Gist says he and his friends came up with the idea after realizing it was hard to find places to camp—something anyone who’s tried to find no-reservation campsites in forests near Portland have probably experienced firsthand.
With nearly 200 state parks, access to public outdoor areas in Oregon doesn’t seem like it should be a problem. But, as Gist explains, this access is stifled because of overcrowding.
“Every place in the world has an access problem with public outdoor access. On the East Coast, they don’t have it. Here we have it, but it’s crowded,” Gist says. “We have places to hike, but not places to stay, and that’s the important thing because that’s when you experience the elements and the change around you and experience that time in nature.”
In terms of accessibility to nature, it’s not the worst problem to have, but it does limit some people from getting outside, especially alone. Gist says they wanted to find a way to completely redesign the experience of deciding where to go camping.
At first, they were going to create a site that helped people find public campgrounds. Then they realized there was an untapped outdoor resource: private land.
They began calling up landowners, sending postcards and scouting lands to get a database of places for the site. They were worried people wouldn’t want guests on their land due to privacy concerns. But for the most part, he says the reaction has been the opposite.
“At this point, we’re getting calls every day—focused in the Northwest for the most part,” he says. “A lot of the landowners don’t even care how much they’re making. A lot of times they’re excited to share; they live there for a reason and they want people to enjoy and value their land for the same reason they do—to allow people to reconnect to the land in a different way.”
The site—headquartered in Portland and Denver—officially launched this past Earth Day, and now has 31 properties, including nine in Oregon.
So we decided to rent a treehouse.
If you’re unfamiliar with the treehouse craze, educate yourself here and here.
There were other options. For example, Camp Lizard—which is 190 acres of land an hour and a half outside of Portland that you can camp on for $10-$40 a night.
Camp Run A Muk is a “30 foot deluxe glamping yurt decorated in a bear theme” just south of Seaside. It also has a king-size Tempur-Pedic bed, another king bed, a full-sized mattress, stocked kitchen, big TV and a bunch of other flossy stuff for $100/night.
But dude. Treehouse. It was only 20 minutes from my house in Southeast Portland—close enough to order a pizza, which is so not the point, but whatever.
The land hosts get to set their minimum stay. For Hummingbird Hill, it was two nights. I messaged the host to see if I could only do one night, which he agreed to.
Hummingbird Hill cost $84 for each night, which includes a 15 percent booking fee that goes to the LandApart—this is one of the higher priced spots, which go as low as $10 and as high as $2,000 for a 300-person event space with a barn. Most fall in the $25-40 range.
The treehouse is described as being in an “urban forest 13 miles from downtown Portland” with “unfinished, limited amenities.” As described, it truly was “camping in the trees.”
When we arrived, we parked and lugged food and drinks up a small trail next to the host’s home several times. We still had to bring all the gear we would if we were camping, besides the tent.
I was expecting the treehouse to be nicer.
It’s bare bones: There’s a chemical toilet, the windows are completely open, and there’s a twin mattress with a wool blanket on the ground. I pictured paper lanterns and string lights and piles of cozy Pendleton blankets.
Basically, we were camping—except we were 200 feet in the air.
Still, the host did provide a card table, binoculars, bird-watching book, mattress, wool blanket and a cooler. And my merely moderately outdoor-loving friends wouldn’t have wanted to camp in the middle of September in just tents. Having the roof and knowing the ground would be dry was a big plus, even if it meant crawling down a ladder after three vodka sodas to pee.
And there are things you can’t get in a tent, like waking up to a view of the Multnomah Channel and Sauvie’s Island, off a gorgeous balcony made of tree branches.
Later, I learned the host works at the Oregon Paleo Lands Institute, which sheds even more light on the greater purpose of l;LandApart—it’s a conservationist, environmental endeavor. The host’s entire lifestyle, from his free-range chickens to tiny cannabis plants, was about appreciating nature.
The next day, I felt that grime you get from dew, pine needles and dried leaves: the Oregon musk. I crawled over to the balcony, took it in, then crawled down to get brunch 20 minutes away.
Typhoon Songda may have been kind of a letdown if you were expecting widespread power outages, having to eat all that weird food in the back of your pantry and being able to justify doing nothing but watch How to Catch a Predator all weekend. It certainly was a letdown for the people behind the Yelp page for the storm.
But hey, there’s snow on the ground at Timberline Lodge right now. You can see it on their webcam.
According to their current conditions, it’s 32 degrees and snowing and there’s been 11 inches of new snow in the past 72 hours.
“Snow fell in the low elevations overnight! A nice blanket of snow all the way down Molly’s this morning,” their site reads. “Season Passes are on sale now — Be sure to take advantage of our early bird season prices. Do your snow dances!”
We asked John Burton, Timberline’s spokesman, what this meant for the opening date of ski season.
“All I can say is November openings are very common,” he says. “But you never know, it’s opened earlier than that before.”
“The Saturday system is probably a once every 10-15 years system,” says Laurel McCoy of the National Weather Service. She says seeing typhoons isn’t uncommon, but doesn’t happen every year. “It’s not going to be a typhoon or hurricane when it gets here; it will get some cold air in it, but it’s going to bring a lot of moisture and energy with it.”
The energy is so significant that the National Weather service is issuing a high wind warning for Oregon over the weekend. The Oregon Coast could see winds at 80-90mph on Saturday, which certainly isn’t kite-flying weather.
September is here and summer is unofficially but immediately gone. It’s 65 degrees today, which is 31 degrees less than just five days ago.
Kelly Point Park reopened today, but judging by this early onset of cold air and rain, does anyone care? Especially when you still can’t swim there and there’s one to two inches of snow are expected at 6,000 ft and above this week at Mount Hood?
The park is long thought of as a quintessential Portland swimming hole, but park officials want to make sure people know just how dangerous swimming there is. They have since installed two additional “Do not enter water” signs—bringing the total up to about three dozen.
“I want to make sure the danger of swimming off Kelley Point Park is clear to all park visitors,” says Portland Parks & Recreation Director Mike Abbaté in a statement. “We know the temporary closure was an inconvenience for some folks, but we felt it was necessary. With the park open once again, we hope visitors to Kelley Point will enjoy the trails and other on-shore activities with an eye on safety.”
Built on the site of a filled-in creek, Goose Hollow remains green and relatively serene, except when the Timbers play. The ass-busting hills and 100-year-old trees at its west end give way to crisscrossing MAX tracks and Old Portland dive bars as you roll downhill. Here, century-old brick apartments, the posh Hotel deLuxe and Portland’s oldest theater share space with Timbros and PSU students at the Hotlips Pizza outpost. Often ignored by everyone who doesn’t live here, the Hollow feels sleepy after nightfall, except for the traffic under the notorious Vista Avenue Viaduct and ambulances wailing down Burnside.
What citizens call this stadium is a surprisingly accurate indicator of how long they’ve lived in Portland. Many know it as Civic Stadium (1966-2000), then it was PGE Park (2000-2010), followed by the least popular Jeld-Wen Field era (2011-2014). It’s been Providence Park since 2014, and this one seems like it’ll stick. Whatever you want to call it, this park is home to the reigning Major League Soccer champions the Portland Timbers, as well as the National Women’s Soccer League’s Portland Thorns and the Portland State Vikings football team. One thing has stuck through every name change: a feral cat colony that has lived in the stadium since 1985.
Set the bacon and black pepper aside: Coco Donuts is the best of Portland’s “fancy” doughnut shops. By keeping it comparatively simple, it nails small-batch, classic doughnuts—cake, glazed, buttermilk and the like—with slightly upscale toppings like lavender glaze. Neighboring a busy MAX stop and Providence Park, this location is best for grab-’n’-go on weekdays. $.
Little Red’s Bakeshop and Cafe 1401 SW Yamhill St., 503-706-8748, littleredsbakeshop.com. Breakfast and lunch Tuesday-Sunday.
Michigan baker Jenni Welliver’s Little Red’s popped up seemingly overnight, filling the airy, one-room shop with a pastry spread so lush that customers opening their mouths to complain should fill them with almond croissants. You can see, and smell, bakers lovingly rolling croissants from any of three tiny tables. $.
Vtopia 1628 SW Jefferson St., 971-271-7656, vtopiancheeses.com. Lunch and dinner Wednesday-Sunday.
Vtopia Cheese Shop & Deli makes the best case we’ve tasted for vegan cheese. Cheesemaker Imber Lingard’s line includes a tasty aged white cheddar and a purplish-brown fermented black garlic wedge that’s aged for two months. You should definitely bring the latter to your next vegan-heavy party. $.
Once a withering lounge attached to a de facto extended care facility, the Driftwood Room has been reborn as a windowless jewel box of luxe tippling that lures a cosmopolitan array of visiting guests, West Hills dowagers and genteel bohemians sniffing happy-hour bargains like half-price Champagne cocktails alongside flights of Manhattans. Imagine…a world of tiny Manhattans in dim light.
Founded by Bud Clark in 1967, Goose Hollow Inn feels like both a museum for Portland’s former mayor—the iconic “Expose Yourself to Art” poster of Clark flashing the Kvinneakt statue downtown hangs on the wall—and an extension of him. Stop in to pregame for a Timbers match and taste one of the finest Reubens in town.
Hammer + Vine carries every cute glass terrarium globe, succulent, fern and carnivorous plant you’ve ever seen in any minimalist coffee shop window or hip girl’s Instagram. The tiny 600-square-foot shop also carries handmade treats like natural deodorant, rock pendants or pretty much anything that looks its most natural photographed against a paper white background.
An iconic “soccer store for soccer people” since 1993, the Far Post packs itself tight with a wide selection of balls, boots, jerseys, replica apparel and, of course, Timbers gear. It also has a killer sale section and plays live and classic games on TVs in the store.
Think of Scrap PDX as the Goodwill that doesn’t require you to dig through aisles for hours to find the best nostalgic and lightly used stuff. Founded in 1998 by teachers, this creative reuse store gets art supply donations and resells them at a 60 to 75 percent discount. The store puts it all up front, from encyclopedias to holiday decorations to old Portland maps.
Portland Gear 627 SW 19th Ave., 503-437-4439, portlandgear.com. In 2014, the 25-year-old Portland native Marcus Harvey designed a simple shirt with a block letter P with the outline of Oregon making up the hole, selling thousands online. In March, he opened a brick-and-mortar store that carries the P logo on everything, from bottle openers to baseball caps.
Portland’s longest-running theater company is unexpectedly tucked among dive bars on West Burnside and upscale car dealerships. The main stage upstairs hosts full runs of classics like The Miracle Worker and crowd pleasers, like ART’s risqué holiday offerings. Top actors, a discerning leader in artistic director Dámaso Rodriguez and programming that’s not afraid to jump genres are among the reasons that it’s still going strong.
Vibrant is equal parts badass yoga studio, arts venue and speakeasy. During the week, movement classes like yoga for cyclists, Latin dance and tai chi fill the studio, and the recurring Sunday Salons are community dinners cooked and hosted by owner Sophia Lippert.
Washington Park 4001 SW Canyon Road.
The second of two gigantic park complexes in West Portland, where Forest Park (see page 61) is a sprawling wilderness, Washington Park is a manicured complex of tourist destinations (the Oregon Zoo, International Rose Test Garden, Japanese Garden, Pittock Mansion), monuments (Vietnam Veterans of Oregon Memorial) and good old-fashioned parks (Hoyt Arboretum).
Local designers Woody Adams and Kevin Fitzgerald launched their line of patches on Kickstarter just two months ago. After receiving massive support and raising three times the initial funding goal, they partnered with the Oregon State Parks Foundation. Now, the patches ($6) and stickers ($3) are for sale online, and a portion of proceeds from patches will benefit state parks.
The first ten patches and stickers have been released: Cascadia, Silver Falls, Ecola, Ft. Stevens, Oswald West, Rooster Rock, Smith Rock, Wallowa Lake, Cape Lookout and Umpqua Lighthouse. There’s also a poster with all 53 patch designs.
If you’re yearning after a certain patch, you may need to wait a few months. But that’s part of the fun—Adams says they are planning on releasing one patch a month.
“We think people will have fun following along, visiting the new park each month and exploring the state,” Adams wrote in an email to WW. “If demand really increases, we might speed up the release dates.”
For locals still convinced that Portlandlost its soul, the inner eastside is where Portland jumped the charcuterie. But imagining a complete transformation rather underestimates how deep the area’s weirdness lays. The vacuum museum endures, and while ad agencies and production companies overtake Portland Storage, a prominent (four-inch-horns-implanted) Satanist figure still serves as building manager. Our Lower East Side has always felt like the most defiantly urban part of Portland, and there’s a certain logic to the ongoing changes—practice spaces give way to venues and home-furnishing stores become housing. Neighborhoods do evolve, even if recent developments have artificially hastened the timetable.
Trifecta, 726 SE 6th Ave. Dig a Pony, 736 SE Grand Ave. Portland Music Company, 531 SE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, 1945 SE Water Ave.
MUST Kachka 720 SE Grand Ave., 503-235-0059, kachkapdx.com. Dinner-late daily.
Kachka, our 2014 Restaurant of the Year, makes homestyle Russian food to a standard you’ll struggle to find west of St. Petersburg. It’s filled to the brim with colorful Soviet propaganda posters and a sense of nostalgia for a time that might not have ever existed but seems wonderful, boisterous and free. Take, for example, the Herring “Under a Fur Coat.” It’s as if some wizard took all the cold salads at a potluck picnic and did a spell over them. The potatoes and the beets and the herring and everything else come together in a magically refreshing and satisfying way no mother could recreate. $$-$$$.
Holdfast 537 SE Ash St., Suite 102 (inside Fausse Piste Winery), 503-504-9448. One seating per night, 7 pm, Friday-Sunday. Tickets at holdfastdining.com.
Three hours after you’re shown to your seat by Holdfast’s two chefs—they’ll bring an aperitif and paint the scene of their drive out to the foggy coast to grab the revelatory fresh geoduck clams you’re about to eat—you’ll emerge sated, smarter and perhaps with a couple of new friends. $$$$.
J & M Cafe 537 SE Ash St., 503-230-0463, jandmcafepdx.com. Breakfast-lunch daily.
J & M has the charm of your favorite greasy spoon with the modern quality of our city’s high-end spots. It isn’t going to overthink your go-to brunch order with atypical ingredients, but it’ll make damn sure your chorizo scramble is going to be among the best you’ve ever had. $.
Le Bistro Montage 301 SE Morrison St., 503-234-1234, montageportland.com. Dinner-late daily. An after-hours institution perhaps best known for snarky waiters’ long pours and the communal tables grouping together a motley post-bar assemblage of goths, club kids, and suburbanites, the nighthawks found their way under the Morrison Bridge to forage for Creole comfort staples alongside more rarefied delights like frog legs and alligator bites. $-$$.
An unendingly generous place, with baba ghanouj, hummus, tabbouleh and mini-pizza veggie and meat mezza platters that handily feed two, Nicholas is the Lebanese spot in town that—after 30 years—always knows how to meet every possible customer halfway. $-$$.
Renata 626 SE Main St., 503-954-2708, renatapdx.com. Dinner Monday-Saturday.
This industrial eastside Italian spot is a gorgeous space that inspires adoration: airy, undivided and centered on two long wood slabs surrounded by old-fashioned classroom chairs. The menu changes daily but you want the pasta, bread and then some more pasta. $$$-$$$$.
Smith Teamaker 110 SE Washington St., 503-719-8752, smithtea.com. Brunch-early dinner daily.
As one last grand passion project before his 2015 death, Steven Smith opened a flagship location for his namesake line of artisan teas. Curious consumers may sip impeccably-steeped flights, quaff carbonated varieties straight from the keg, or simply watch the production of a favored flavor from leaf to cupping lab to sachet. $.
Taylor Railworks 117 SE Taylor St., 503-208-2573, trwpdx.com. Dinner daily.
Among the many delightful little discoveries at Erik Van Kley’s ode to big-tent Americana, there is one very big one: the crab. Enjoy it with the Pinewood Baron—an elegantly smoked Negroni made by adding barrel-aged, smoky lapsang souchong tea. $$$.
Trifecta is equally welcoming to single drunks at the bar, to intimate dates in the plush booths and to loudmouths with kids at the party tables in the middle. Food is humble in spirit—the dishes startle not with novelty but with sterling execution, and are delivered to your table with the effort-free cool that comes only with genuine competence. $-$$$.
Water Avenue Coffee 1028 SE Water Ave., No. 145, 503-808-7084, wateravenuecoffee.com. Breakfast-early dinner daily.
While the cafe’s primary concern remains the blood of the bean—artisan coffees roasted upon a 1974 French Samiac plucked from the Swiss Alps—this favorite of the quickly-percolating Water Avenue barista district has also expanded its menu to feature a selection of Antipodean toast dishes. $.
Bit House is a bit like a circus for bar people. Seemingly everything is happening at once—cocktails served in bottles with straws, house-blended sherry, slushies, High Life ponies as whiskey backs. There’s always something new, and the bar staff is among the most lauded in town.
Dig a Pony 736 SE Grand Ave., 971-279-4409, digaponyportland.com. Dig a Pony has a special place as the industrial eastside’s gently posh, everyman’s meat market and party bar. Though DAP’s enormous picture windows, exposed-wood walls, Belgian Pilsners and sours permanently on tap, and rotating cast of vinyl-only DJs place it dead center in the shitshow of New Portland hip, the bar’s prices and easy demeanor keep it approachable.
Loyal Legion is home to what’s likely the longest bar in Portland and 99 taps of all-Oregon beer, the largest selection anywhere. If you dig, you’ll almost always find a buried treasure, like a double IPA from Upright Brewing—an absolute corker.
My Father’s Place 523 SE Grand Ave., 503-235-5494.
My Father’s Place is a bar of gruff bonhomie, unreconstructed comfort food like gravy-covered chicken-fried steak, impossibly cheap drinks and a well-worn rec-room aesthetic. For self-made orphans day-drinking away obligations, “spending the holiday at My Father’s Place” remains the perfect excuse—for almost anything, really.
Though the menu is rum-happy and loosely tropical, Rum Club has recently gotten more mileage out of bourbon and muscat brandy. You can’t go wrong with any order, but we heartily recommend the Pedro Martínez, which blends aged rum with Torino vermouth, bitters, lemon oil and sweet maraschino.
This is an unlikely home for Portland’s most celebrated pub burger: the Slowburger—a Beacon Rock-sized column of ground chuck, Gruyere and onion rings that tastes like the Oxford English Dictionary needed more definitive examples of the concepts “fat” and “melt.” Practice self-care and order it with salad.
White Owl has a sterling selection of beer taps, a DJ party mess on weekends and taco parties. Is it embarrassing that the only place you see L.A. nightclub-style lines in Portland is at a summer patio bar with a bunch of picnic tables?
The top shelf of lower Southeast’s increasingly crowded “distillery row”, the newly opened 14,000-square-foot House Spirits (Aviation Gin, Volstead Vodka, Westward Oregon Straight Malt Whiskey) headquarters masks a smooth, formidable production facility—75,000-pound-capacity grain silo, the West Coast’s largest operational still—with tartly-understated art deco tasting room.
Mother Foucault’s Bookshop 523 SE Morrison St., 503-236-2665. Closed Sunday-Monday.
Within continually expanding, casually aspirational environs binding a jaded academic’s high-brow tastes and low-key wit—read the shop’s name aloud—browsing Mother Foucault’s precisely-curated inventory always feels a bit like scanning the host’s titles midst local literati cocktail party, even on the odd nights a reading isn’t scheduled.
Something like the eastside’s answer to U.S. Outdoor Store (see page 27), Next Adventure is an all-things-outdoors superstore in the heart of one of the least-outdoorsy chunks of the city. It has everything you could want for kayaking, climbing, camping and traversing the snowy wastes, whether by shoe, board or ski.
Among the oldest such stores in the country, Portland Music Company stocks a wide variety of guitars—the most impressive hung out of reach and not for sale—alongside a range of instruments, stage gear, recording equipment, and Oregon’s largest collection of sheet music. The nearly 90-year-old shop offers the usual lessons and lately even some electronica tutorials.
One of Portland’s very first co-op makerspaces, Shop People’s 14,000-square-foot underground facility was recently purchased by Global Homestead, and the new owners have announced a thorough renovation of existing studios (metalwork, woodwork, jewelry) alongside new centers (technology, sustainability, industrial design) touching upon more modern crafts.
AFRU Gallery 534 SE Oak St., 503-915-7301, afrugallery.com. Closed Sunday-Wednesday.
Elaborating on traditional notions of gallery management with heightened showmanship, AFRU often seems as much venue as exhibition space. Their annual Byte Me! showcase accents the potential of interactivity with snarkily digitized installations, while a recent Art of the Circus debut featured performances by jugglers, contortionists, and A-WOL Dance Collective aerialists.
Oregon Museum of Science and Industry 1945 SE Water Ave., 503-797-4000, omsi.edu.
More than a million visitors each year visit this ginormous facility to simulate earthquakes, explore black holes, prowl the decommissioned attack submarine, or gaze upon the IMAX-sized theater screen. While the grand majority of exhibits are geared toward the junior scientist set, museum restaurant Theory takes both food and food-science seriously while OMSI After Dark invites age-appropriate guests to drink up chemistry’s finest practical applications.
After long chasing stages to host their innovative productions, the lauded theater company finally bought a warehouse all their own with space enough for collaborations, independent adaptations—upcoming runs include the fairy-tale-brutality-inspired HEAD. HANDS. FEET: Four Tales of Dismemberment—and year-round classes and workshops for both young and old.
Portland Indoor Soccer 418 SE Main St., 503-231-6368, pdxindoorsoccer.com. Open play Tuesdays and Fridays.
Where to play the beautiful game in the dampened city? Portland Indoor Soccer’s 20,000-square-foot complex offers classes in conjunction with the national Lil’ Kickers program of non-competitive instruction for tykes aged 1½ to 9, plus five seasons of adult league play.
Kidd’s Toy Museum 1301 SE Grand Ave., 503-233-7807, kiddstoymuseum.com. Closed Saturdays and Sundays.
Not, in any way, a “kid’s toy museum,” this collection of Frank Kidd holds some 50,000 playthings primarily made pre-WWII—an age without plastic (or, alas, much racial tolerance)—while concentrating upon die-cast vehicular models and perhaps the world’s largest assemblage of mechanical banks.
Near the southern terminus of the Eastbank Esplanade, a small stretch of dock attracts far more intriguing traffic on puddletown’s sunniest days. Though elevated police attention has tempered impromptu bacchanals, the Portland Boathouse still regularly hosts swimmers, paddleboarders, dragon boaters, rowers and the sort of celebrants reflexively drawn to the nearest beach equivalent.
In multiple locations: Alma Chocolate, 1323 SE 7th Ave. Bunk Bar Water, 1028 SE Water Ave. Coava Coffee, 1300 SE Grand Ave. Bunk Sandwiches, 621 SE Morrison St. Olympia Provisions, 107 SE Washington St. Stumptown Coffee Roasters, 100 SE Salmon St.
Over the years, Division Street has developed and changed with the rest of the city, but it still maintains a beloved sense of Northwest quirk and a dedication to local tradition while having become the epicenter of Portland’s restaurant culture. While you may occasionally run into a Portlandia character or two along the way, the Division neighborhood is a great place to spend a summer’s afternoon with a dizzying amount of options for food, drink and shopping.
Burrasca, 2032 SE Clinton St. Funhouse Lounge,2432 SE 11th Ave. Longfellow’s Books & Periodicals,1401 SE Division St. Nationale,3360 SE Division St.
Clinton Street Theater 2522 SE Clinton St., 503-238-5588, cstpdx.com.
Despite changes to both the theater and neighborhood in the past 100 years, the century-old Clinton Street Theater remains a single-screen cinema that provides an intimate viewing experience. In addition to regular programming, The Rocky Horror Picture Show has screened every Saturday at midnight since 1978, with a list of venue-approved costumes, props and activities available on the theater’s website—including the throwing of toast and the flinging of toilet paper. It’s a long-standing tradition in Portland brought to you by one of the oldest operating cinemas in the nation.
A new arrival, Abyssinian Kitchen joins Portland’s top tier of Ethiopian and Eritrean eateries. We enjoyed the asa dulet, a bright preparation of crumbled tilapia seasoned with serrano peppers and onions. For heartier appetites, order the awaze tibs—large cubes of tender beef in a spicy sauce built from berbere. $$-$$$.
The American Local is a mash-up of down-home ’Merican vittles and Japanese izakaya fare. The menu at this 2-year-old small-plates spot—skewers, a knockout flank steak and oysters—offers innovative combinations to pair with the house sake. $$-$$$.
Ava Gene’s 3377 SE Division St., 971-229-0571, avagenes.com. Dinner nightly.
The menu at Ava Gene’s is overwhelming. It’s mostly in Italian, it features uncommon abbreviations and rare ingredients, and it changes almost daily. All the better reason to ask your server for suggestions—the staff is well-versed and eager, and everything is good. $$$-$$$$.
Stocking its own curry leaves, house ghee and fresh spices harvested directly from India’s Kerala region, Bollywood Theater takes an amiable approach to a cuisine often blamed for weaponized seasonings. $.
Burrasca 2032 SE Clinton St., 503-236-7791, burrascapdx.com. Lunch and dinner Tuesday-Saturday.
Burrasca, one of our five favorite restaurants of 2015, has no gimmick. Chef Paolo Calamai is a native Florentine, and this space is a true Tuscan restaurant of simple spice and humble presentation. Alongside the housemade tagliatelle in beef ragu, order the good, Italian table wine—$20 bottles of Il Bastardo that Calamai knows from home. $$-$$$.
Ford Food & Drink 2505 SE 11th Ave., No. 101, 503-236-3023, fordfoodanddrink.com. Breakfast-dinner daily.
A cafe that serves cocktails and offers a delightfully simple menu complete with vegan options, Ford is a great place to meet with friends or get some work done. The Pagan Jug Band performs at 8:30 pm Tuesdays, playing folk music that perfectly suits the venue. $.
Kim Jong Grillin Southeast Division Street and 46th Avenue, 503-929-0522, kimjonggrillin.com. Lunch and dinner daily.
Han Ly Hwang’s revelation in Korean barbecue sits in a lonely cart locale across from the Woodsman Tavern. The stand serves shaved bulgogi and galbi short ribs in gargantuan mounds, worthy of a filling dinner and breakfast the next day. $.
Little T American Baker 2600 SE Division St., 503-238-3458, littletbaker.com. Breakfast-late lunch daily.
Owned by renowned baker Tim Healea, Little T’s flagship bakery offers novel takes on traditional breads and pastries, baked with ingredients sourced from local vendors and growers. In addition to a consistent and affordable menu, Little T offers a weekly rotation of $5 specialty loaves. $.
Nuestra Cocina 2135 SE Division St., 503-232-2135, nuestracocina.com. Dinner Tuesday-Saturday.
Despite Division’s newly diversified selection of restaurants, this standby for no-frills, authentic Mexican cuisine has maintained a loyal following. You feel like you’re at a friend’s place, listening to meat sizzle while the scent of fresh-baked corn tortillas wafts across the airy room. $$.
Pinolo Gelato 3707 SE Division St., 503-719-8686, pinologelato.com. Lunch and dinner daily.
Pinolo opened only last year, but immediately took over as the best gelato shop in town—and the others are not even close. Flavors include intense, deep dark chocolate, and hazelnut as though it was from the shell. Each sorbetto is like burying your face in fresh fruit. $.
Pok Pok 3226 SE Division St., 503-232-1387, pokpokpdx.com. Lunch and dinner daily.
After a decade, Andy Ricker’s experiment with northern Thai cooking continues to evolve and entice. $$-$$$.
Portobello Vegan Trattoria 1125 SE Division St., 503-754-5993, portobellopdx.com. Dinner Tuesday-Friday, brunch and dinner Saturday-Sunday.
“I never knew vegan food could be this good,” said a carnivorous companion. Portobello is a traditional Italian trattoria, except the steak is a big, meaty mushroom, and the pizzas are topped with cashew cream. $$$.
Roe 3113 SE Division St., 503-232-1566, roepdx.rest. Dinner Wednesday-Saturday.
Dining at Trent Pierce’s flagship seafood hall feels like a snorkeling trip guided by Kinfolk magazine; it is to fish houses what The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou was to pirate movies. But you know what? The Life Aquatic was a really good movie. $$$$.
Tidbit Food Farm and Garden 2880 SE Division St. Lunch and dinner daily.
This cluster of carts at 28th Place and Division is one of Portland’s best. Dog Town’s artisanal hot dogs, Slow Squeeze’s cold pressed juice, Back to Eden’s gluten and dairy-free treats, Paper Bag’s woodfired pizza, and Scout’s weird beers are among Tidbit’s best offerings. $.
Wong’s King Seafood Restaurant 8733 SE Division St., Suite 101, 503-788-8883, wongsking.com. Dim sum, lunch and dinner daily.
If you go to Wong’s King for dim sum and don’t completely cover every square inch of the table with plates and small, steaming metal dishes, you’re not doing it right. Simply point and know that you will be rewarded with deliciousness. $$.
The Woodsman Tavern 4537 SE Division St., 971-373-8264, woodsmantavern.com. Lunch and dinner Monday-Friday, brunch and dinner Saturday-Sunday.
The Woodsman evokes a fairy-tale version of a woodland tavern, and that feeling extends to the menu: fresh oysters, warm and crunchy fritters, crispy fried chicken that melts off the bone. Go for oyster hour, when the ever-changing menu is unbelievably cheap. $$$.
Xico 3715 SE Division St., 503-548-6343, xicopdx.com. Dinner nightly.
Xico does things its own way. For example, the cooks mill their own masa with a small, 5-horsepower machine. It’s romantic, sure—it’s also why this brightly decorated restaurant sells $8 guacamole and a $24 chicken tamale plate. $$$-$$$$.
Despite being a restaurant, Double Dragon doubles as one of the few decent bars on Division. The unbridled masterpiece of the menu is the kimchi Kobe beef hot dog: a festooned drum-line parade of texture and flavor. It tastes like poise—a fat Russian circus bear pirouetting gracefully atop a balance beam. $.
Dots Cafe 2521 SE Clinton St., 503-235-0203. dotscafeportland.com. Lunch-late Monday-Friday, brunch-late Saturday-Sunday.
If aliens, Elvis and Marie Antoinette opened a cafe, it might look like Dots. It’s a ’50s-style diner with a killer bacon bleu cheeseburger. It’s a dandy’s lounge with potent lemon drops. It’s a gutter-punk hang with no-nonsense bartenders. Come as you are. $.
Funhouse Lounge 2432 SE 11th Ave., 503-841-6734, funhouselounge.com. Closed Monday-Tuesday.
A carnival-themed bar complete with a lounge room covered in portraits of clowns, Funhouse is one of the last joints that seems truly dedicated to keeping Portland weird. The venue’s main stage features regular standup comedy, improv, burlesque and theater—including drag renditions of The Golden Girls—and the drinks are strong enough to help you through the occasional rough performance.
The second location of San Francisco’s German bike, brat and bier bar, Gestalt plays mostly heavy metal, and talk is mostly about biking, especially the mountainous type. The brats are $5 and great, and the beers include Spaten Optimator, Hacker-Pschorr weisse and Occidental Kölsch—with more on the way.
La Moule is a dim, drunky spot devoted to soccer-ball-sized bowls of mussels and frites. Tommy Klus’ cocktails are about the same price as the Belgian import beers on tap—after showing up to dig deep into a bowl, you’ll leave deep in the cups.
Is it possible for the city’s best-loved wine bar to be underrated? Tom Monroe and Kate Norris’ wine collective has been an incubator for some of the best wines in town. The only problem you’re likely to encounter is finding a seat.
Artifact: Creative Recycle 3630 SE Division St., 503-230-4831, artifactpdx.com.
Artifact offers vintage and gently used items ranging from clothing to furniture to accessories and trinkets. Artifact has a unique sense of fashion when it comes to its wares, making it the perfect shop for someone looking to enhance their wardrobe with old-school style.
No neighborhood in Southeast Portland is complete without a comic shop. A Dalek sculpture sits in the storefront to guard the boxes full of old issues, and the guy behind the counter won’t judge you if you don’t know what a Dalek is.
Clinton Street Video 2501 SE Clinton St., 503-236-9030.
The video rental shop still lives. Sift through Clinton Street Video’s vast collection to discover rare finds you won’t see on Netflix, and would have to pay a fortune for on Amazon. Bring your kids and teach them about the ancient relic known as VHS.
A great shopping destination for the adult hobbyist or the parent of a child who just loves to create, Collage is as if a Michaels and a Jo-Ann Fabric had a really hip kid together. Each visit will turn up some cool stuff you never thought existed.
Little Otsu’s Portland flagship store is the type of cutesy shop you think of when you think of the Rose City—tiny notebooks and all. Here, you can find unique notebooks, journals and planners, alongside publishing materials from independent producers.
The smell of old books hits you as soon as you walk into this maze of publications piled up to the ceiling. If you’re looking for something specific, you’ll want a different bookstore. But if you’re looking to get lost in a labyrinth of out-of-print magazines and books you’ve never heard of, then all the literary adventures you’ve ever craved await you at Longfellow’s.
Everyone deserves a female-friendly orgasm. She Bop wants you to reach that climax in whatever way suits you best. With an array of eco-friendly options and knowledgeable staff, She Bop is dedicated to a healthy and diverse exploration of sex-positivity.
St. Salvage 3576 SE Division St., 503-477-7734.
There’s very little about St. Salvage anywhere online, which makes finding fun merchandise among the store’s wide array of used furniture feel all the more secretive and adventurous. The shop will even design a custom sign or marquee for you at a very reasonable price.
There are a million places to grab fancy bars of soap and paper products, but few such shops double as art galleries. Nationale displays visual works primarily by young Portland artists such as Emily Counts and Delaney Allen, who work on the (comparatively) inexpensive end of fine art. Nationale also carries a curated selection of very nice things for gallerygoers.
In multiple locations: Adorn, 3366 SE Division St. Cafe Broder, 2508 SE Clinton St. Lompoc Hedge House, 3412 SE Division St. Pine State Biscuits, 1100 SE Division St., Suite 100. Tea Bar, 4330 SE Division St. Townshend’s Tea House, 3531 SE Division St.